Wednesday, November 16, 2005

LaBute's Wreck

“A Room in LA.” That is the secret location in which, until tomorrow, Hollywood actor, Ed Harris and playwright and movie director, Neil LaBute will have been holed up rehearsing a new play. From tomorrow, however, the pair will move to Cork for a couple more days of rehearsal before the show, LaBute’s latest, Wrecks, has its world premier at the Everyman Palace Theatre.

This unusual event has meant that the Everyman has been working under an extremely unusual set of rules of engagement. For one, the script remains secret. While the theatre’s director, Pat Talbot, has read it, to other members of staff, the script has remained “tightly under wraps.”

Talbot and LaBute, who have worked together some years ago in the United States, have, apparently, been seeking a project to do together for some time. The plan has finally come to fruition in 2005 as one of the concluding events of Cork’s European City of Culture program.

Some details of the show have, of course, emerged. Wrecks is a one-man show. Harris (whose twinkly menace was most recently used to great effect as a mobster in David Cronenberg’s A History of Violence) plays a man who has recently lost his wife who tells of his love for the woman now taken from him.

But given that Neil LaBute creations (films such as Your Friends and Neighbours and The Shape of Things) tend to have a nasty twist or two along the way, surely we can expect the same from “Wrecks”?

“No,” says a spokesperson for the Everyman. “That is one thing we do know. We were told that there wasn’t a nasty twist to it. It is a very tender, heartfelt play.”

Harris made his stage debut in the Broadway production of Sam Shepard’s Fool For Love, although he has not been seen on stage since 1996. Now, however, the time is apparently ripe for a return to the boards.

In, er, ebullient mood, Harris recently told the showbiz trade rag, Variety, he was indeed in possession of “the right stuff” for a Cork debut: “I'm ready to rock and roll on this one,” he told Variety. Before adding a no doubt heartfelt exclamation of “I love Ireland!"


Anonymous Anonymous said...

After seeing it tonight, I would say it does have a twist. But 'nasty' is debateable.

12:29 AM  
Blogger luke clancy said...

i now know that my source at the everyman made a few mistakes on facts when we spoke. One of those mistakes relates to the 'twist'. When the source said that Wrecks "does not" have a nasty twist that was wrong. It was also false that the Everyman director worked with Labute first in the US, it was, in fact, at the Gate, Dublin, that they first came together.

8:52 PM  

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